Penguin Bks. Apr. 2023. 112p. ISBN 9780143137665. pap. $20.00. POETRY
In her latest volume of poems (following Quickening Fields), Rogers explores the synchronicity between nature and humanity—hardly surprising for someone awarded a special John Burroughs Medal for Lifetime Achievement in Nature Poetry. In her introduction, she defines flickering as a “light-hearted stance and a promise to return,” and these poems flicker brightly as they move from the body outward into the world through art, beauty, and science. Along the way, she investigates the mysterious connections binding the universe: “Something abroad is knocking./ Something pervasive, resolved, unknown,/ seeks entrance. Imagine unlatching/ the gate. Envision what may pass/ through among us. Pretend to answer.” Further clarifying her poems, Rogers includes an essay by her son John A. Rogers (Louis Simpson and Kimberly Querrey Prof. of Materials Science and Engineering, Northwestern Univ.), who reveals “the flickering electrical waves present on and across the healthy brains of every living creature on the earth.”
VERDICT It’s easy to get lost in Rogers’s lush language, but there are larger issues here that will make the book appealing not just to poetry readers but to anyone concerned with the environment.
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